A lot has happened this week in the Southeast Asia gaming world! We have news concerning new controversial esports regulations in Indonesia, exciting new announcements from the makers of Coffee Talk coming up, a Filipino boxing legend entering the ring, a retro shooter from Southeast Asia, and a new piece of VR hardware coming our way. Let’s go!
New Indonesia Esports Regulation raises concern over Game Industry Monopoly and Rigid Regulations
Indonesian esports federation Pengurus Besar Esports Indonesia (PBESI) aims to regulate the Indonesian esport industry by releasing a new set of rules. The rules, published on August 12, will handle essential industry topics, ranging from organizing tournaments, welfare and protection for athletes, to sponsorship. Inaugurated in 2020 under the National Sports Committee, PBESI focused on developing esport with international achievement as their target. Headed by the Indonesian State Intelligence Agency Chief, PBESI is among the three leading esports organizations in Indonesia, the others being Indonesia Esports Association (IESPA) and Indonesia Video Game Sports Association (AVGI).
Some industry insiders, such as RevivaLTV Chief Growth Officer (CGO) Irliansyah Wijanarko, have welcomed the rules. According to Wijanarko, it is stating it to prevent a monopoly in the Indonesian esport market by the developers (by limiting access toward their official competition), ensuring healthy competition between international and local developers, and providing protection with a stable career path for athletes.
Most, however, do not share the same optimism. Chapter 39 of the rule states that all games, not only esport games, must be registered under PBESI. The chapter also says that PBESI will have the power to ban and block access to games that did not pass their approval. The chair of Banten Province IESPA, Ucu Nur Arief Jauhar, criticized that the rule will only give unfair advantages for some developers, effectively creating a monopoly. He argued that the regulation is against the law, as PBESI is not a representative or regulatory body of the government on games and esport. There are many other government-approved esports organizations and associations, of which have similar standing with PBESI. The only government body with regulations for games and esports is Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication and Information Technology. Their rule on interactive electronic games serves as the base for Indonesia Game Rating System (IGRS).
New Announcements from Toge Productions at Indie Houses Direct
Indonesian indie darling Toge Productions has announced to reveal new games on August 31 at Indie Houses Direct. This upcoming livestream event is a games showcase organized by The Indie Houses, a collective of seven indie labels, among them Toge Productions. So far, the announcement remains cryptic, only stating that they will be “unveiling a new game published by Toge Productions” and “dropping news on the sequel to one of their biggest titles”. Which games will be revealed is still unclear, however. A sequel to the successful Infectionator series seems most likely, but a Coffee Talk 2 is also possible.
Fighting Pride – Manny Pacquiao Enters Open Beta
Fans of the Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao can look forward to the open beta for a mobile game about the exceptional athlete starting today. Ranida Games announced that the beta for Fighting Pride – Manny Pacquiao Saga would begin on August 20, but initially only for players from the Philippines. It has not yet been determined when other players will be allowed to enter the boxing ring.
Do you remember the old-school shooter Hexen? A Southeast Asian version has been announced, spicing up the classic retro gameplay with some genuinely local environments and mythologies. Indonesian studio Trimatra Interactive had the chance to reveal Angkara with a trailer at 3D Realm’s Realms Deep games showcase, placing it prominently among other Doom-style shooters.
Delayed Sun Returns With Official Trailer
Zombie survival shooter Delayed Sun is coming out by the end of this year. 15-year old Indonesian developer MelvinTang Games confirmed that the game would be coming to Steam Early Access at the favourable price of $4.99 (regional pricing TBA). A new trailer shows that graphics and gameplay have made a considerable step forward compared to earlier footage. Definitely, a game to watch out for!
Full-body Motion Tracker from Singapore Launching on Kickstarter
Hardware news from Southeast Asia is a rarity, which is why we were even more surprised to hear about Axis, a new full-body motion tracker from Singaporean tech company Refract. The device, aimed at tracking a user’s full-body motions in VR applications and games, is currently up for funding on Kickstarter. With a completely wireless VR controller and compatibility with Oculus, SteamVR, OpenVR, and OpenXR, a new and innovative piece of hardware is in the making. This video shows how the whole thing could look in a game using Taekwondo as an example:
You can look up which games from Southeast Asia were released this month in our handy release overview.